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Sunday, November 8, 2015

10 Most Expensive Currencies in 2015 (Hint: #1 Isn’t the U.S. Dollar)

As of April 23, 2015, the most expensive currency in 2015 is not the U.S. dollar, the British pound, or the euro. Surprisingly, the most valuable currencies in the world don’t always belong to the wealthiest economies. The following list of currencies gives the U.S. dollar a run for its money when it comes to the most expensive currency in the world. All exchange rates are as of April 22, 2015. Canadian Dollar (CAD)

One Canadian dollar buys US$0.81.
At its recent peak, which was in April 2011, the Canadian dollar was able to purchase US$1.05. The Canadian economy fared much better during the Great Recession, with no banks needing bailouts and home prices only declining modestly. Since then, the Canadian economy has expanded, slowly growing at an average pace of 2.0% and 2.5% in 2013 and 2014, respectively. These factors have helped it

9. Azerbaijani Manat (AZN)

One Azerbaijani manat fetches US$0.95.
Azerbaijan, located between the Black and Caspian Seas, has Russia and Georgia as its neighbors to the north, and Turkey and Iran as its neighbors to the south. This oil-rich nation grew at 4.5% in 2014 and is expected to benefit from an expansive network of oil pipelines running through its borders.

8. Swiss Franc (CHF)

One Swiss franc is equivalent to US$1.03
On January 15, 2015, the Swiss National Bank removed its cap on the Swiss franc, momentarily sending the currency 15% higher against the U.S. dollar. The floating of the exchange rate was a result of continued demand for the Swiss franc as a safe-haven currency from a well-diversified, export-focused economy.

7. Euro (EUR)

One euro buys US$1.07.
After the global financial crisis, the European Union only managed to exit from its recession in the first quarter of 2014. The latest gross domestic product (GDP) readings still indicate that the economy is growing at less than one percent per year. However, the euro remains the currency of the world’s largest economy, the European Union.

6. Cayman Islands Dollar (KYD)

One Cayman Islands dollar buys US$1.21.
With a population of 60,000, this offshore tax haven boasts zero unemployment and more than 90,000 businesses, mostly in financial services. While there is no direct taxation, such as corporate or income taxes, the government derives revenues mostly from duties on imported goods and tourism.

5. Jordanian Dinar (JOD)

One Jordanian dinar is equal to US$1.41.
The Jordanian dinar may be one of the biggest anomalies in the currency market. Jordan remains reliant on foreign assistance for essentials to fight poverty. Moreover, Jordan is one of the smallest economies in the Middle East, which currently imports the majority of its energy needs and continues to battle budget deficits. (Source: CIA World Factbook, last accessed April 23, 2015.) Still, its currency is valued at more than 40% higher than the U.S. dollar.

4. British Pound Sterling (GBP)

One British pound sterling purchases US$1.50.
The United Kingdom is the third largest European economy only behind Germany and France. Financial services, including banking and insurance, constitute the majority of the U.K. economy, however, manufacturing still accounts for roughly 10% of the economy. (Source: CIA World Factbook, last accessed April 23, 2015.) Recently, the United Kingdom has economically outperformed the rest of Europe, growing at above 2.5% since the start of 2014.

3. Omani Rial (OMR)

One Omani rial is worth US$2.59.
Oman, which borders with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen, is an energy-rich nation with 77% of its government revenues being derived from oil. (Source: CIA World Factbook, last accessed April 23, 2015.) Prevailing low oil prices will clearly add to budget deficits, as Oman has an expansive social safety net; but the Omani government intends to reduce its oil sector contribution from above 40% in 2014 to below 10% by 2020. This suggests low oil prices will have less of an effect on Oman’s rial.

2. Bahraini Dinar (BHD)

One Bahraini dinar is worth US$2.65.
With the second most expensive currency in 2015 so far, Bahrain is another Gulf state for which oil accounts for a majority of government revenues, totaling 88% as of 2013. (Source: CIA World Factbook, last accessed April 23, 2015.) The Kingdom of Bahrain is a tiny island nation that’s one-tenth the size of Hawaii, but boasts 1.2 million citizens. Bahrain has grown its economy at 3.4% on average over the last four years. (Source: The Heritage Foundation web site, last accessed April 23, 2015.)

1. Kuwaiti Dinar (KWD)

One Kuwaiti dinar is equivalent to US$3.30.
As a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Kuwait was the 10th-largest exporter of oil in 2013 and has the sixth-largest oil reserves in the world as of 2014. (Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration web site, last accessed April 23, 2015.) Kuwait’s oil revenues enabled the country to continuously save 10% of its government budget annually, protecting it—and, in turn, the Kuwaiti dinar—from the effects of the current downturn in oil prices. (Source: CIA World Factbook, last accessed April 23, 2015.) Currently, the Kuwaiti dinar is the most valuable currency and the most expensive currency in the world.

This is the current list dated 6th July'2015 and is ranked per their value against US Dollar. Most valuable currency doesn't necessarily mean that the currency is better investment option or that it represents a better economic health of a nation. Please find below the list of expensive currency in their order of expensiveness:
1. Kuwaiti Dinar (1 KWD= 3.30 USD)

In an area slightly smaller than New Jersey, lies the home of the world’s most valuable currency. Kuwait has been involved in talks this year with five other Gulf Arab monarchies to form a single currency. The Kuwait currency is currently pegged to the dollar.
2. Bahrain Dinar (1 BHD= 2.65 USD)

A small island nation, approximately 2.65 times the size of Washington DC, Bahrain is geographically central in relation to its Persian Gulf neighbors. Its industry relies on petroleum production and refining, as well as financial services and construction. With an exchange rate to the US dollar at around $2.65 for one Bahraini Dinar, it’s the third most valuable currency in the world. It’s also expected to be relatively steady, as it was officially pegged to the dollar in 2001.

3. Omani Rial (1 OMR = 2.60 USD)

Oman, officially called the Sultanate of Oman, is an Arab state in southwest Asia on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula. It has a strategically important position at the mouth of the Persian Gulf., has had its currency exchange rate pegged to the dollar at a rate of 1 OMR = $2.60 US since 1986. With that pegged relationship holding firm, seems as though the Rial’s fate remains tied to the fate of the dollar.
4. Latvian Lats (1 LVL= 1.61 USD)

One Lats is currently worth $1.61 US. The country, about the size of West Virginia, has entered the process to phase out the Lat in favor of the Euro, which is expected to be the official currency around 2012.

5. UK Pound Sterling & Gibraltar Pound (British Overseas Territory located on the southern end of the Iberian Peninsula at the entrance of the Mediterranean) (1 GBP = 1.56 USD)

This holiday season, it seems now more than ever, citizens of the UK are taking advantage of their favorable exchange rate and coming to the US, where for them everything is half-off.
6.  Jordanian Dinar (1 JOD =1.41 USD)

Jordan may lack water and crude oil but the Mideast kingdom has one thing going for it – a strong currency. From 1927 to 1950, the Palestine Currency Board issued Palestine pound as the official currency in both Palestine and the Trans-Jordan Emirate, according to Wikipedia. When Jordan became independent in 1946, the country wanted its own currency and Jordanian dinar became the kingdom’s official currency.

7. Cayman Islands Dollar (1 KYD = 1.22 USD)

With no direct taxation, the islands thrive as an offshore financial center, with hundreds of banks, insurers and mutual funds. One Cayman Islands Dollar equals $1.22 US. The earlier currency used in Cayman Islands was Jamaican dollar, which was replaced in 1972. On the islands, the US dollar is accepted as legal currency.
8. European Euro (1 EUR = 1.11 USD)

Officially introduced in 1999, the multinational Euro didn’t begin changing hands until January 2001. After a rocky start, the Euro has gained on the dollar for years. The currency is the official currency of eurozone that comprises of 17 countries. Some these include Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain. The currency is the second largest reserve currency as also the second most traded in the world.

9. Switzerland franc (1 Franc = 1.06 USD)

Switzerland has a stable, prosperous and high-tech economy. In 2011, it was ranked as being the wealthiest country in the world in per capita terms (with 'wealth' being defined to include both financial and non-financial assets). It has the world's nineteenth largest economy by nominal GDP and the thirty-sixth largest by purchasing power parity. It is the twentieth largest exporter, despite its size. Switzerland has the highest European rating in the Index of Economic Freedom 2010, while also providing large coverage through public services.

10. Bahamian Dollar (1 BSD = 1 USD)

The dollar has been the currency of The Bahamas since 1966. It is divided into 100 cents. The Bahamian dollar is pegged to the U.S. dollar on a one-to-one basis which means that any business will accept either U.S. or Bahamian currency and many of the businesses that serve tourists have extra U.S. dollars on hand for the convenience of American tourists.
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